Berengar II

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Otto's victory over Berengar II: Otto I ("Thevconicor (um) REX") receives a sword from the king kneeling on the left, who is called Beringarius , as a sign of submission . Otto's henchman on the right carries a sword with the point upwards as a sign of authority. Illustration of a manuscript from the World Chronicle of Otto von Freising . Milan, Biblioteca Ambrosiana, Cod. SP 48, olim F 129 Sup., Around 1200

Berengar II. (* Approx. 900; † August 4, 966 in Bamberg ) was Margrave of Ivrea (925–964) and King of Italy (950–961) and thus one of the national kings .


Berengar was the son of Margrave Adalbert I of Ivrea and of Gisela, daughter of Unruochinger Berengar I , and thus a descendant of Charlemagne . In 925 he succeeded his father as Margrave of Ivrea.

He rebelled against King Hugo I of Italy, whose niece Willa, the daughter of Boso , Margrave of Tuscia , he had married, but had to flee to the East Franconian King Otto I in 940 . In 945 he returned with a small army and was welcomed as a liberator by the towns and barons of the country.

After Hugo's abdication in 946, his 18-year-old son Lothar II received the title of king, but Berengar II ruled in his place until Lothar suddenly died in 950 and the Lombard rulers elected Berengar II and his son Adalbert II as kings . When Lothar's young widow Adelheid , daughter of King Rudolf II (Welf) of Burgundy, refused to marry Adalbert, Berengar locked her in 951 in the Tower del Baradello, high above Como. She escaped and called Otto I for help. He moved to Italy, defeated Berengar, married Adelheid himself and was declared king of the Lombards without a coronation. Berengar had withdrawn to the Appenine mountain fortress of San Marino . Otto, who withdrew across the Alps, left his son-in-law Konrad the Red behind in Italy. Through negotiations, he got Berengar to come to the Augsburg Reichstag in 952 as Otto's vassal . Thereupon he and his son received the Kingdom of Italy by handing over the Margraviate of Verona and the Duchy of Friuli to the Duchy of Bavaria as a royal fief.

During the uprising of Otto's son Liudolf in 953/54, the Ottonian rule was weakened, which Berengar II used to recapture the separated areas. He also went against the Pope and several northern Italian nobles. When Berengar besieged the Margrave Azzo in Canossa, Otto sent an army under his son Liudolf, who had meanwhile been reunited. This pushed the king back in 957 to his fortress San Giulio, from where he was soon extradited by his own people, but released by Liudolf. After Liudolf's death on September 6, 957, Berengar took control of Italy again. When Pope John XII. and the Italian nobles once again called Otto for help, the king set out on a journey to Italy in 961. When he approached, Berengar's troops refused to fight. In August 961 Otto captured Pavia after a short battle and declared Berengar deposed. He fled and holed up on his fortress San Leo in the area of Montefeltro , until he finally surrendered in 964. Otto I sent the prisoner to Bamberg , where he died in 966. His wife Willa went to a monastery. His son Adalbert II retired to Burgundy, his son Guy died in 970 fighting the Swabians, and his son Conrad was Margrave of Ivrea from 970 until his death in 1001, and from 996 to 998 Duke of Spoleto . His daughter Rozala married Arnulf II the younger Count of Flanders around 968 .



  1. Eduard Hlawitschka has summarized details and sources on the exact date of death in: The ancestors of the high medieval German kings, emperors and their wives. An annotated table work. Vol. 1: 911–1137, part 1. Hannover 2006, p. 386.
predecessor Office successor
Lothar II King of Italy
Italy becomes part of the Holy Roman Empire
Adalbert I. Margrave of Ivrea
Adalbert II.